Each year, vehicle theft is one of the most frequently reported crimes across Toronto. According to the Toronto Police Service (TPS), over 14,700 vehicles were stolen city-wide in 2021 – a more than 50% increase from 2016.
In December 2021, I voted with City Council to request that TPS establish a strategy to address the growing issue of vehicle theft in Toronto, including working more proactively with partner agencies across Ontario to share information and coordinate investigations into reported incidents. Additionally, City Council requested support from the federal and provincial governments to address this issue.
This March, TPS announced a new program in which parking enforcement officers will begin using vehicles that resemble normal police cruisers, except they are equipped with infrared roof cameras instead of flashing lights. Using special licence plate recognition software, the infrared cameras will be able to immediately identify the licence plates of vehicles that have been reported as stolen. This is critical step towards streamlining the investigation process and harnessing the abilities of new technology.
To help prevent vehicle theft, TPS advises residents to safeguard their vehicles by parking in well-lit areas, locking all valuables in the trunk, and keeping vehicles in locked garages when not in use, if possible. For more information on steps you can take, visit www.torontopolice.on.ca/crimeprevention.
Supporting individuals fleeing Ukraine
The City of Toronto continues to stand in solidarity with Ukraine and Toronto’s Ukrainian-Canadian community in the wake of Russia’s illegal invasion and the resulting humanitarian crisis.
The City’s current focus is on coordinating efforts to support the arrival of Ukrainian refugees, including:
- Identifying gaps in settlement support systems and opportunities to address them;
- Strengthening collaboration with service providers and key organizations in the Ukrainian community; and
- Information sharing and outreach.
For more information on how you can support Ukrainian refugees in Toronto, including through donations or volunteering, please visit www.toronto.ca/refugees.